Why Evan Lysacek still is the talk of U.S. men's skating

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Evan Lysacek at the 2013 U.S. Olympic Media Summit in Park City, Utah.  (Lucas Jackson / Reuters)

Evan Lysacek at the 2013 U.S. Olympic Media Summit in Park City, Utah. (Lucas Jackson / Reuters / October 1, 2013)

Richard Dornbush?  9th.

Max Aaron? The reigning U.S. champion was a respectable if non-medal competitive 7th in his world debut last March but struggling this season.

Abbott also was a disappointing 9th at the 2010 Winter Games after having dominated the U.S. Championships a month earlier with skating impressive enough to win Olympic gold.

He has made the podium in none of four worlds, with a best finish equal to Lysacek’s worst; two of four Four Continents (both third places); one of three Grand Prix Finals (a win); and, to create a comparison with Lysacek, seven of his last 10 Grand Prix events, including one this season (two wins).

Rippon has made the podium in just three of his last 10 Grand Prix appearances (one of two this season) and one of three Four Continents (a win).  He never has qualified for a Grand Prix Final.

Miner has two podiums in seven total Grand Prix events, with a ninth place in his one event this season.  Dornbush is 0-for-6, with a fifth place this season.

Aaron and Jason Brown, senior Grand Prix rookies this season, each has one podium in two events and a very poor free skate in the other.  Another promising rookie, reigning world junior champion Joshua Farris, was fifth in his debut event and withdrew from the second with an injury.

When you add that all up, it doesn’t amount to much in terms of Olympic medal contention.  In fact, it shows the sum of all the parts doesn’t come close to adding up to a less-than-whole Lysacek.

Say all you want about the beautiful skating Abbott and Rippon produce at their best and that Brown, still just 18 and lacking a consistent triple axel, has used to dazzle audiences.  Figure skating is a competitive sport, and they keep score, so the bottom line is results trump everything else.

For years, Evan Lysacek was the ace.


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